Here's Your First Look At The King Carnival Float Hitting The Streets Of Valletta This Weekend
Some of the capital's highlights, all in one massive float
One of the highlights of many Maltese children's first Carnivals revolve around the awe-inspiring moment they spot the King Carnival, the headlining float, peek around the streets of Valletta. This year, the carnival company behind the Carnival highlight, Landa, went all out to coincide with the Valletta 2018 celebrations, and they've started to tease what the finished product is going to look like.
In an official unveiling of the float on Wednesday afternoon, Valletta 2018 Chairman Jason Micallef, together with Deo Debattista (Parliamentary Secretary for Consumer Protection & Valletta 2018) and Jason Bususttil (Carnival Artist Director) met up with Clint Axisa, the head of Landa to tease some shots from the King Carnival Float.
The images prominently featured the head of a lion (for centuries the symbol of Valletta) holding up a tile emblazoned with the Valletta 2018 logo. But anyone following Clint Axisa, a man who has grown up with Carnival in his blood, has had the opportunity to check out even more details of this weekend's headlining float.
In a feature on TVM programme Mill-Qarċilla sas-Salib, a still under construction King Carnival can be seen taking form, showing off some bright colours towards the back of the float.
Earlier this week, with last minute preparations set into overdrive, Clint Axisa shared a sketch of the revered King Carnival float for this year. The detailed black and white drawing shows some of the capital's highlights, from the fortifications to the Siege Bell Memorial.
In fact, the 1565 vibe is also echoed in the towering figure of Grandmaster La Valette sitting squarely in the middle of the float. The previously-mentioned lion can be seen perched atop a ship's hull, no doubt reechoing the old knights' theme.
On Wednesday evening, then, Clint followed the official unveiling with a short Facebook Live video teasing even more; the choreography in front of the float, along with King Carnival in all its bright, neon-lit glory. The medley in the background also churned some local and international favourites, mashing Justin Timberlake's Can't Stop The Feeling with The Travellers' Hafi Paċi u Kuluri.
Clint Axisa definitely has Carnival blood running through his veins. His father, Charles Axisa, was where the Landa nickname comes from, and was a veritable Carnival legend. A long-time enthusiast, Charles was a veteran float-building who took care of designing and building King Carnival for 17 straight years. He died in April 2013, but his son Clint has since then taken up his mantle as the new king of the Maltese Carnival.
"They said I'd forget or feel better by time, but that's not true," Clint said in a Facebook post dedicated to his father last month on Charles' birthday. "Not one single day passes that I don't think about you. I will never forget what you did to me, and I believe we will meet again."
Judging by all the teasers from 2018's King Carnival, Charles would definitely be very proud of his son's work.
The King Carnival float will be gracing the Valletta festivities tomorrow as part of the famous defile.